Coconut oil, which is very popular in recent years, is multi-purpose. Kitchen, cosmetics, personal care and maintenance are an essential component of our cabinets. But is it really good for your health? To help you see more clearly, Yucca took the survey and interviewed nutritionist Anthony Bertho. Here are his conclusions on the subject!
Coconut Oil Contains Very Good Fats: False
Almost all coconut oil is made up of what are called “saturated” fatty acids. These fatty acids are essential for the body, but today we consume them in excessive quantities, which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease if the consumption of carbohydrates in the general diet is high (see our article on fats).
On the other hand, in low-carb (high-fat and high-carb) diet patterns, coconut oil consumption is not a health issue.
Coconut oil contains very special saturated fatty acids: that’s right
Coconut oil is made up of 60% medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are very specific fatty acids. These triglycerides travel directly from the digestive system to the liver, thus supplying cells (heart, brain, muscles) with energy faster. Some have put forward the fact that the specificity of these fatty acids makes coconut oil an interesting oil for health. However, our traditional Western diet supplies our cells with energy quickly. So the MCT content of coconut oil does not bring anything interesting.
In contrast, MCTs can be used to enhance a low-carb (or ketogenic) diet. In fact, MCTs facilitate and speed up the production of alternative carbohydrate fuels for cells.
Coconut oil is healthier than palm oil: a mistake
Coconut oil contains 92% saturated fatty acids. Its cousin palm oil contains only 50%.
By comparison, butter is made up of 68% of so-called “saturated” fatty acids, olive oil 15% and rapeseed oil 7%. Therefore, coconut oil is rich in saturated fatty acids more than most fats.
Coconut oil is often used in the food industry: right
Coconut oil, like palm oil, is often used in the food industry in industrial pastries, sweets, and fried foods. But manufacturers rarely use cold-pressed virgin coconut oil, which is obtained from the fresh flesh of the fruit. They use cheaper coconut oil, which is made from dried meat. This oil undergoes many treatments, including hydrogenation.
The hydrogenation can be total or partial. Partial hydrogenation is the most dangerous because this process converts saturated fatty acids into unsaturated fatty acids, which are very harmful to your health and should be avoided as much as possible. In fact, they significantly increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, even when taken in low doses. But manufacturers don’t always say on products whether the fats or oils used are fully or partially hydrogenated.
As for hydrogenated coconut oil (or coconut oil), it cannot be clearly identified in the ingredients list of our products. They can be found under the names: “Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil”, “Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil”, “Vegetable Fat” or, rarely, “Vegetable”. In the oils department, coconut oil can be recognized under the name “Deodorizing Coconut Oil”, so don’t be fooled!
Coconut oil is suitable for cooking: right
Coconut oil tolerates high temperatures: it does not deteriorate under heat and does not become toxic, which makes it an interesting oil for cooking. Its smoke point, that is, the temperature at which smoke is detected and toxic compounds begin to form, is 232 ° C when refined. Please note that unrefined coconut oil is less heat-resistant, with a burning temperature of 177 ° C.
But olive oil is interesting in cooking because it also withstands high temperatures. Refined olive oil has a smoke point of 252°C. On the other hand, fine olive oils are more sensitive: the smoke point of virgin olive oil is 216 ° C and extra virgin olive oil is 160 ° C. Reserve good olive oils for seasoning (see our article on olive oil).
Coconut oil is rich in vitamins and minerals: a mistake
Fresh coconut is a food rich in vitamins and minerals. But turning it into an oil causes it to lose all its nutritional benefits. It contains almost no minerals and almost no vitamins, except for small amounts of vitamin E which gives it a secondary role as an antioxidant. Coconut oil has an advantage, it is its content of antibacterial agents that help fight intestinal infections.
Finally, what do I do?
You can completely do without coconut oil, which does not bring anything exceptional compared to other oils. If you still want to take it, here are some tips:
Consume coconut oil in moderation (except for the keto or low-carb model), and reserve it only for cooking on an ad-hoc basis, alternating with other oils, such as olive oil.
Choose cold maidenhair extract to benefit from vitamin E and antibacterial agents
Avoid deodorized coconut (coconut) oil that is rich in unsaturated fatty acids if it is partially hydrogenated.
Besides cooking, prefer oils rich in omega-3 (flax, walnut, kale) and omega-9 (olive, rapeseed, sesame)